Story: Māori and museums – ngā whare taonga

Ko Tawa database, Auckland Museum

Ko Tawa database, Auckland Museum

The Ko Tawa database lists taonga (treasures) held in the Auckland Museum's Gilbert Mair collection. Tawa was the name given by Māori to Gilbert Mair, a colonial-era surveyor, soldier, land purchaser, interpreter and collector who had a close relationship with the Te Arawa iwi. Mair later sold his taonga collection to the Auckland Museum. The Ko Tawa project involved an exhibition, website, book and television documentary, all based around the Mair collection. One of the aims of the project was to connect young Māori with the taonga of their tūpuna (ancestors).

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Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira

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How to cite this page:

Paora Tapsell, 'Māori and museums – ngā whare taonga - The challenges of the new century, 1997 onwards', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/44121/ko-tawa-database-auckland-museum (accessed 6 June 2020)

Story by Paora Tapsell, published 22 Oct 2014